The majority of European veterinarians in the future will be female. While in 2018 58% of veterinarians of all ages were female, 82% of those under 30 years of age are female. This is one of the findings of the second VetSurvey about the veterinary profession in Europe that has been conducted by the European Federation of Veterinarians (FVE) between November 2018 and March 2019. Veterinarians located in 30 European countries were asked to complete an online survey.

Veterinarians care for animals&people

The objective of the VetSurvey, first held in 2015, is to help understand the current situation of the veterinary profession and to evaluate what actions shall be taken to shape the future of the profession. “Veterinary services are essential to each and every European citizen, not only for taking care of the health and welfare of Europe’s more than 290 million pet animals and 768 million farm animals, but also to protect people against animal related diseases like salmonellosis”, says FVE president Rens van Dobbenburgh, Veterinarians make an important contribution to our society, because they protect the environment and they boost the economy, says former FVE president Rafael Laguens.

Future outlook for veterinarians

Looking into the future, the areas in which veterinarians will be needed most by society, are those related to the One Health concept, including pet health in the family, food safety and food quality, disease control for public health, animal welfare and environmental health. To face future challenges, one of the top priorities for European veterinarians is to become more specialised in several areas. Likewise, better preparation for business will be required and improved digital skills will be crucial. Eight out of ten veterinarians currently use at least one type of social network for professional purposes. The highest social media usage amongst veterinarians we currently see in Bulgaria, Romania, Russia, and Slovenia (+90%). Vets in Ireland, Italy, Switzerland, and the UK show the lowest rates of social media use in Europe (under 75%).